The court only assents to co-parenting arrangements that allow children to bond with both of their parents. However, if one parent feels like the other parent’s visitation rights threaten the minors’ well-being, he/she can seek to have them limited or revoked. And this includes concerns about your ex’s new partner.
Refusing to allow your kids to visit their other parent may feel like the best thing to do to protect them, but you could be held in contempt of court orders. However, speaking to a family law attorney in Kingston, TN, can help you figure out the right thing to do if the danger is real.
Must My Co-Parent Seek My Permission to Have their Partner Around My Child?
Whether your ex has primary custody or enjoys , he/she has a right to make independent decisions on what is good for the child in their custody. Notably, this includes deciding how they choose to spend their share of time with the child, unless otherwise.
They are also free to pick a babysitter of their choice during his/her time with the minor. So, if he/she decides to have their new girlfriend/boyfriend babysit, there is nothing you can do to forbid it unless they are unfit for the child.
Can My Ex and I Agree on Keeping Girlfriends/Boyfriends Away?
Children from divorced families are fragile emotionally, and introducing other temporary people in their lives can be detrimental to their stability. Divorcing couples can agree to protect their kids by keeping girlfriends and boyfriends away from the minors.
They may agree to only introduce potentially serious partners like fiancés they intend to commit to for the long-term. Such agreements can be included in the child custody order to keep the parents in check. And if any parent breaches what was agreed and introduces a new partner that they have just met to the kids, you can ask a Kingston child custody lawyer for help.
Can I Modify Child Custody Order Based on My Ex’s New Partner?
The court can consider modifying the child custody arrangements if it is in the child’s best interest. Certain changes in circumstances can adversely affect the child’s well-being and justify some adjustments. Your ex getting engaged isn’t enough to warrant modification, but if they marry someone whose habits or actions can affect the child, things may need to change.
Your ex’s new partner or their children can pose a risk for harm to your children, for instance, physical or sexual abuse. In that case, an experienced can help put together evidence and file for the modification.
What Concerns Can Warrant Legal Remedies?
Many children become unhappy and feel rivaled when a parent begins to date a new person because they are still mourning the end of their previous complete family. However, some signs may get the other parent concerned about having the child around their ex’s partner. They include:
- The new partner was convicted for sex offenses recently
- The child returning from the visits exhausted or hungry
- The new partner was arrested for drunk driving with the children on board
- The child returning from the visits looking improperly dressed or disheveled
- The child reports fights between their other parent and their new partner
- The child talks about alcohol or drugs and relates it to the new partner
- The child refuses to visit the other parent
Which Reasons aren’t Enough to Have the Co-Parenting Arrangements Modified?
The court doesn’t act on every complaint at face value, but a skilled family law attorney in Kingston, TN, can guide you on what is acceptable in court. Sometimes, the reasons you may want your ex’s partner nowhere close to your children may be out of your personal preference. Thus, they can be declined.
Here are some examples:
- You are angry and feel disrespected because you heard about the new partner from your child, and not from your ex him/herself
- You are hurt because it seems too soon for him/her to introduce a new partner to the kids
- You are not too comfortable with the idea of a stranger “parenting” your kids
- You are worried about the impact the new partner will have on the little ones
- You are concerned that your kids getting attached to the new partner and getting you “replaced”
What Factors Affect the Child Custody Order Modification?
In deciding whether to alter the current arrangements in child custody or not, the court considers all relevant factors that can worsen or safeguard the child’s welfare. The judge will seek to eliminate anything that makes the minor uncomfortable and order corrective actions that make them comfortable and safe.
These factors include:
- A parent’s relationship with the child
- The parent’s environment
- The parent’s home
- Drug or alcohol abuse by the parents
- The health of the parents
- Safety of the child
- Domestic violence
What Visitation Conditions Can the Court Make to Protect the Child?
The court prioritizes the interests of a minor over the comfort of a parent. Therefore, it can outline conditions that ensure that the child is protected from anything harmful during visitation. They may include:
- A requirement for the parent to abstain from certain activities when with the child
- Time restrictions or curfews with the child
- Limitations on where the parent can take the child
- Parent and their partner may be required to abstain from consuming alcohol when the child is around
- The requirement to not have the partner present during visitation
A Legal Professional Helping You Protect Your Child
Many parents are struggling to follow a court order that they feel isn’t best for their children. Introducing children to someone that isn’t a positive influence can damage them both emotionally and psychologically. Fortunately, the courts always favor an arrangement that is in line with the needs of the minors.
Talk to an experienced court modification attorney near you for better outcomes. And if your concerns are not based on normal human jealousy or resentment, the court can review a child custody order in Tennessee. Let us examine your case and provide you with legal options.